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 What’s New 

What's New: The Economics of $15: A Reader

| October 17, 2017

The demand for a $15 minimum wage is hugely popular. However, doubts remain about whether raising the minimum wage to $15 would benefit or hurt workers and the economy. These doubts have been sowed by conservative politicians, right-wing think-tanks, employer groups, and a largely uncritical media. Luckily, over the last couple of years progressive economists have been hard at work studying the potential impacts of a $15 minimum wage and critically examining the claims made by those who oppose the minimum wage.



What's New: Why unsustainable fossil fuel use keeps on growing

| October 17, 2017

Simon Pirani, Senior Visiting Research Fellow at the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies, gave a seminar at the Grantham Research Institute. He answers questions about the history of fossil fuel consumption, why consumption keeps rising when we need to reduce energy use, and how we could overhaul the systems which keep consumption high.



Bullet #1497: Mexicans Denounce Canadian Mega-Mining Projects

by Richard Fidler; Mexican Network of Mining Affected People | October 16, 2017

As Prime Minister Trudeau makes his first official visit to Mexico, writes Mining Watch Canada, 'the Mexican Network of Mining Affected People' (REMA by its initials in Spanish) has issued a communiqué to call on Trudeau to live up to his commitments and stop the devastation of Indigenous and campesino communities that has enabled Canadian mining companies to make big profits.



LeftStreamed: 1917: The October Revolution

October 15, 2017

It is now 100 years since the Great October Revolution of 1917, one of the most remarkable events of the 20th century. An autocratic monarchy governing over an emergent capitalist economy was swept aside, in a series of revolutionary ruptures between February and October, and replaced by a socialist state under the leadership of the Bolsheviks. The trajectory, meaning, strategy and tactics, and, finally, the complete reversal of the Revolution has sparked sharp debate, and division, to this day. Here is only a sample, from Eisenstein to Mieville, to Lenin's classic text, The State and Revolution.



What's New: TTCriders 2017 Annual Report

| October 14, 2017

Founded in 2011, TTCriders is a grassroots transit advocacy organization of transit riders. We campaign for an affordable world class public transit system for Toronto. We believe that everyone in Toronto has the right to ride fast and reliable public transit at an affordable price. Our priority campaign is to get lower fares and better service for riders on the TTC. It’s a struggle in this age of austerity. At the beginning of this year’s budget season, the TTC was facing a 2.6% budget cut despite significant cost increases, including the roll out of PRESTO and the opening of the Toronto-York Spadina Subway Extension. There was a very high likelihood of major service cuts and fare increases.



What's New: Nature, Labor, and the Rise of Capitalism

by Martin Empson | October 14, 2017

Capitalism has, to put it mildly, a peculiar relationship with the natural world. Karl Marx perhaps summarized it best in the Grundrisse, where he wrote that with the rise of the capitalist mode of production, 'for the first time, nature becomes purely an object for humankind, purely a matter of utility; ceases to be recognized as a power for itself; and the theoretical discovery of its autonomous laws appears merely as a ruse so as to subjugate it under human needs, whether as an object of consumption or as a means of production.' In the same section, Marx notes that 'capital creates the bourgeois society, and the universal appropriation of nature as well as of the social bond itself by the members of society.'



Bullet #1496: Costa Rica’s Banco Popular Shows how Banks can be Democratic, Green – and Financially Sustainable

by Thomas Marois | October 13, 2017

A decade on from the 2007-08 global financial crisis, the majority of private banks have changed very little. Most remain solely concerned with maximizing their returns, while sustainable or social goals remain subservient to this. For conventional economists, anything else remains an impossible or distant dream. But there is hope for a different kind of bank - one that is run democratically and with sustainable principles at its core. Costa Rica’s cooperative Banco Popular and of Communal Development (or BPDC) illustrates a viable and desirable alternative to the average private bank.



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Socialist Register 2017:
Rethinking Revolution

A World to Win

A World to Win:
Contemporary Social Movements and Counter-Hegemony

Hearts and Mines

Hearts and Mines:
The U.S. Empire's Culture Industry

 Events Listings 

7:00pm, Friday December 1, 2017
Friends House, 60 Lowther Ave, Toronto.



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twinkle starRed Talks: Toronto’s Housing Crisis

Toronto’s Housing Crisis
Why it’s happening and what to do about it.

Presentations by:

* Simon Wallace - The Parkdale Rent Strike

* Niko Block - Why Housing Costs are Skyrocketing

Organized by the Socialist Project, co-sponsored by Centre for Social Justice | Facebook event | PDF poster
6:30pm, Tuesday November 21, 2017
A Different Booklist Cultural Centre, 777 Bathurst Street, Toronto.



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The Capitalism Workshop: Cracks and Fissures in Europe

Cracks and Fissures in Europe
Authoritarian Statism, the Hard Right and Challenges for the Left

Presenters: John Kannankulan and Stefan Kipfer

What is distinctive about the new conjuncture is the growing delegitimation of the key institutional supports of neoliberal hegemony, which have sponsored the making of global capitalism under its ideological auspices. This stretches from the bureaucracies of the European Union, the IMF, and the WTO and, in the context of the Trump presidency, to possibly even the U.S. Treasury and Federal Reserve, whose capacity to manage the economic contradictions of capitalist globalization will be severely challenged. The most visible expression of this institutional crisis is the delegitimation of all the political parties of the centre-left and centre-right that promoted neoliberal globalization. But it is important to note that this is not a matter of the ideology promoting capitalist globalization having only recently and suddenly become unpopular. There has long been opposition to internationalization projects like NAFTA and the EU constitution amongst the popular classes. This has been a key reason for the decline of social democratic parties as they governed as neoliberals in defence of liberal markets and the rise of the far right, most recently of far right political forces in the Germany and Austria, but hardly limited to those cases as the alt-right and Trump in the US underscore. The success of xenophobic right-wing political forces today calls for the development of a socialist praxis fit for this perilous political moment. Taking this seriously requires that we address the inroads of the far right into working class constituencies that were bastions of trade unionism for much of the 20th century, and traditionally voted heavily not only for New Deal Democrats, or Labour and Social Democratic parties on the centre-left but even, as in France, for Communist parties.

RSVP to attend: thecapitalismworkshop@gmail.com

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